During this Christmas season, I stepped back and made the decision not to participate in the perennial tradition of Christmas madness. I felt a calm come over me that filled me with peace and tranquility.

I have a sign on my front door, “Welcome to my small peaceful home with a big heart.” I filled my home with simple and meaningful decorations full of memories of the past. I opened my door to celebrate the season with family and friends, enjoying the gift of their presence, not their presents. My home was filled with laughter, smiles and the gift of unconditional love.

When did the spirit of Christmas get lost? The “season” starts in July and has its formal entrance on Black Friday, which starts days or weeks before. I chuckle when I see the ridiculous advertisements on TV for cars, mattresses, toilet paper, etc., etc., etc. Our economy depends on how much is spent during this time of year.

After Christmas, the stores have long lines of people exchanging their gifts. It seems like a vicious cycle of obsessive materialism. How much do we need? I don’t remember the first Christmas having a mall or a car dealership nearby.

The Christmas spirit should be every minute of every day. I am not judging how anyone celebrated Christmas. We each have our own family’s traditions and customs. I ask you to take a moment and reflect: What was the most meaningful part of your Christmas season?

Mary Louise Liucci-Smith

Scarborough


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